A Crime Investigation

I heart garage sales.
I’m mad about estate sales too.
Thrift stores make my heart all-a- flutter.  The smell of ‘must and old’ make me giddy.  As a teen, I used to shop in second hand stores, for my clothes, because I wanted too.
And, I don’t even consider this a problem.
The town I live in is too good for garage sales.  The people around here don’t need old things that have been used, heaven forbid.  
They are rich.  
Even if I was rich, I would still long for the grime of a good sale.
They do have an annual flea market.  It’s their compromise to help people in less fortunate places, to come and glean from our fine things.
Well.  I go.  Of course.  Just the other day, as a matter of fact.
I found some great stuff.  I’m actually on home decor probation, so I shopped for my kids.
As I combed the sale, I looked for something I could take home that would be fun.
And boy, did I find it:  A complete (new in the box, to boot) CSI Crime Investigation Kit, complete with finger printing. Retail Value $99.00  I got it for $8 bucks.
My kids were over the moon.  And, I was pretty sure I was the best mom e-ver.
They were occupied for hours, you know creating crimes and then solving them.  It was a hoot.
I enjoyed it until they brought this out.
Oh yes, this kit came with a special light that detects liquid or bodily fluids, as my daughter stated.  
I know.  Just typing that made me shiver.

They donned their plastic gloves and protective eye gear and went to work.
This is what I heard, over and over, “Oooooh!  Gross.  Look at that.”
“Oh, what til you see this!  That is disgusting.”
It went on and on.  And then it dawned on me:  They are not pretending.
Surely that toy light is not detecting something in my house?
And then I heard this, “She really needs to clean this house.”
I jumped up and did some of my own investigating.
I found my two punks in their bathroom hovering over ‘evidence.’
“Alright, alright, let me see,”  I said and grabbed the light.
“GAAASSSP!”  I shone the light onto the wall and exposed pee pee in a sprinkled pattern.  
I held it over the commode and yep, you guessed it, little illuminated dots.
“See, we told you,” they said in unison.  “You really outta do something about this,” my daughter demanded.
I handed her the light and returned a few minutes later with an array of cleaning supplies.
“This is a true investigation.  Clues are pointing to you.”  I handed them a rag and said, “Since you’ve got your rubber gloves on, it’s time to clean up this crime scene.”
Not so much the best mom e-ver anymore from the look on my kids faces, but their bathroom glistened.  
At least until someone had to potty again.

Flowers of the Field

“So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.” Matthew 6:27-29

My Favorite Dish

I LOVE this meal! It’s so easy and delicious and everyone in my family adores it, including my toddler! Check out Kelly’s for more!

  • 1 box Ziti noodles
  • 1 Can Del Monte Traditional Sauce 
  • 1 Ricotta Cheese (16 oz)
  • 1 tablespoon of basil, 1 tablespoon of oregano
  • 1 cup Mozzarella Cheese
  • Parmesan cheese


Cook ziti according to directions. Put in 9″ X 13″ pan. Mix in Ricotta cheese and seasonings. Mix in Mozzarella cheese. Pour sauce over top. Bake in 350° oven for 45 minutes. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese, serve. Delicious!

Answers to All Your Q’s: STAY FOR A GIVEAWAY!

I think I was tagged nine-hundred and forty-eleven times this week, I thought I’d do one big I’m “IT” post.  
I will tag five people at the end of this giant post.  Complete one or all.  This is my contribution to keeping it alive.
I’m feeling puny today, so it’s my best.  Which isn’t saying much.

Just copy paste THIS and everything below up until my Five links:

I thought it would be cool to have a meme where we post links. We can post up to five. Then we tell five more people to share their links. If we all share who tagged us, our links are sure to be seen!

They can be business links, favorite sites, affiliate links, whatever you want…

There are Five Rules:

1. MUST be clean. No R rated sites.
2. Only FIVE links.
3. MUST tell 5 people.
4. A link back to the person who tagged you

Okay.  So here are five random links I’d like to share:

Bringing Home Ava (This is my twin’s blog)

Frozen Smiles

Rainbow and Sherbet Boutique-love this swank

Caroline’s Mom

Pet Lovers

Next up is Mommy Pie’s tag: Five Classes I Wish They Would’ve Taught in School meme, so without further adieu, here are a few I probably should have taken:

1. How to Clean a House 101- I’ve had my house professionally cleaned by a housekeeper.  I missed something here because she pulled so much dirt and yuck out of my house -it was horrifying (especially since I had ‘cleaned’ before she came-you know, to avoid embarrassment.)

2. How to Fix Hair 101:  Yeah, I stink at this.  And, I have two daughters. They will NEVER get a french braid.

3. How to Cook 101:  I mean it.  Sad, ain’t it?

4. How to Remove Vomit 101:  This would have come in handy about 3 times this week.  Yeah, we got it again.  So lucky that way.

5. How to Avoid Weird Neighbors 201:  I just threw this one in-because WE GOT THEM!

This last one includes a giveaway, just for sticking around so long.  Leave a comment with your answer and I’ll draw a winner for a “How To Knit Kit” (Yes, I know it could very possibly change your life, but I can only award it to one person).

Happy Mommy and Truth in Soliloquy tagged me for this one:  Here are 6 things about me.  One is untrue.  I will then choose a winner from the comments, so don’t forget to leave a comment at the end of this terribly long post.  You know you want to learn how to knit.

1. I have an identical twin sister.

2. I have an old chippy paint door in my bedroom.

3. I played college volleyball.

4. I went thru 3 years of infertility.

5. My husband and I were on staff at a church for 10 years.

6. I have

Comments end Saturday night.  I’ll announce the winner on Sunday.

I’m tagging:

Beautiful Craziness, Valerie Lea, Toni @ It’s Nap Time, Child of the King and Michelle Hix

I’ve Been Replaced

I have been replaced.  My pain runs deep, people.

Very deep.
There’s something new in my hubby’s life.  Something that has come between us.

Do you understand the betrayal that I feel?
I have always been the back scratch er.    I have stopped mid-sentence to accommodate my hubby’s profound itch, for years.  My activities have been redirected when his cry for a good scratch was heard. 
I heeded the call.  
I married him knowing he had itchy issues.  I saw past them.  I manicured my nails with him in mind.  It is the sole reason I keep my trim nails lengthy.
Only to be replaced by a skinny, newer back scratcher?  A replica of the real thing?
Give me a moment to compose myself.
Thank you.
He bought this replacement on a whim.  I’m sure it was brought home out of desperation when I was out of town.  I don’t think he sought her out on purpose.  He was weak.  She preyed on that weakness.
Oh, he says, “You’re the only one, baby.”  And he even pretends to enjoy my scratching.
But I know there is other back scratching going on.  I can feel it.  I’ve even caught him a time or two.  There was always some excuse . . . like a jagged nail or an irritating cuticle. 
I have found solace knowing my children still enjoy my gift.  Up until now, they have resisted the wooden enemy.
And then, my son brought this home from the school treasure box:

My pain knows no limits.

My Pinup

I’ve never been a poster kind of girl.  Even as a kid, rock stars and movie studs didn’t grace my walls.  

Just wasn’t my thing.
I’m not one to cut out fashion from magazines or tear out pictures of ‘must haves.’
Until I saw this.

I now have my first pinup.  Please do not tell my hubby.
It’s private.  He wouldn’t understand.  Envy is green, my friends.

Isn’t he  beautiful?  This is my secret love.  
We’ve been seeing each other for awhile.  I dream of the day we can be united.  
I love his order.  His beauty.  The sheer magnitude of such greatness.
Every time I step into my closet, I see this:

Frightening, isn’t it?  If you must hide your eyes from the horror, I understand.
There is no pattern, no right way.  It screams wrong, all day long.  I long to bring order.  
With all those wire hangers, I make Mommy-Dearest look sweet.
I dream of closet greatness.  I yearn for the day of color-coordination and clothes chronicled like the Dewey Decimal System.   
I have a pinup.  That’s a start.

Sincerely ‘Fro Me to You

There is a box.  It is in my house.  It is large.  It is full. 

It mocks me. 

Can you hear it?

Yes, that is the sound of my bulging scrapbook photo box, pointing its wicked Kodak finger at me. 

I have good intentions.  Really, I do.  When I list hobbies, I put down scrap-booking.  I buy the supplies.  I have stickers for every significant event that has occurred in our lives for the past 10 years.  Did you know they made stickers for baby’s first poop and first public tantrum?

I stuff my photos into that blasted box.  And that’s where they sit.  You know why?

I’m a scrappin’ failure.  It’s true.  I’m a loser in the die-cutting department of life.

Oh, I have good intentions.  Believe you, me.   I’ve bought magazines and attended classes.  I own special scissors and a hole punch in the shape of Mickey’s head.

I’m sure these were designed with serious scrappers in mind.  And in my mind, I am a serious scrapper. Just not on paper, exactly.

And I feel very guilty about that. 

I want to be able to give my kids this ginormous book stuffed full of memories from their amazing childhood.  This will not only impress them, it will announce to the world that I am a good mom. 

But I have a bulging box and I am so far behind.

That’s when this genius idea hit me.

I was digging thru my box when I found this picture:  

(WARNING:  You may want to protect your eyes from the raw horror of this photo).

I was 9.5 years old and entirely too old to be photographed with that doll.  My ‘fro was a gift from my mother- because she was a home-perm gift giver. 

Am I the picture of 80’s beauty or what?

This photo is lovingly referred to by my family as my, “corn cob teeth picture.”  Isn’t that nice?  That’s a self-esteem builder if I’ve ever heard it.  It was a year before I got braces and a much needed chemical straight-ner.

I remember posing for that photo.  I felt pretty.  Which truly proves that beauty is in the eye of the beholder.  And I loved that doll, the way my own daughter loves her baby dolls. 

Just before we left the house for this photo shoot (which makes me sound all model-ish, my photo shoot) I grabbed my favorite doll.  I’m not sure what possessed me to capture this moment with her.  Perhaps I wanted to remember her because battery power caused her to suck on a plastic pacifier or maybe I just needed someone who didn’t care about my hair malady.   It is what it is.  And I’m not even ashamed.  I am a courageous woman.

As I dug through my box, this picture spoke to me.  First, it said, do not ever perm your daughter’s hair without a professional license.  And if you do, do not re-perm it every three months until you create a giant afro on your child’s small head resulting in an enormous looking noggin’. 

Secondly, the photo spoke to my scrap-booking aspirations.  I decided right then and there, every week I would drag up an old photo from last year or 20 years ago and share it on my blog.  It would be a virtual scrapbook, not only for my children, but also for the world.

Since I made this life altering decision, you know what that box has said to me?


See you next Thursday.

Sincerely, ‘fro me to you.

Food for the Soul:

Prov. 4:3 “When I was a boy at my father’s knee, the pride and joy of my mother, He would sit me down and drill me: “Take this to heart. Do what I tell you—live! Sell everything and buy Wisdom! Forage for Understanding! Don’t forget one word! Don’t deviate an inch! Never walk away from Wisdom—she guards your life; love her—she keeps her eye on you. Above all and before all, do this: Get Wisdom! Write this at the top of your list: Get Understanding! Throw your arms around her—believe me, you won’t regret it; never let her go—she’ll make your life glorious. She’ll garland your life with grace, she’ll festoon your days with beauty.”

How to Mop the Floor

I have issues.  Serious.  Issues.   I need a support group.  
Therapy is probably an option.
I need help.
This is how I mop my floor -Blogger Style:

I start the water for my nightly tub soak.  It’s a ritual.  It makes me happy.
Before I dive in, I check my email.
I forget about said water flowing into tub because I am engrossed with a NEW COMMENT.
I do not hear the water overflowing on the tile floor.  Gallons and gallons.  And, did I mention gallons?
My hubby makes the discovery and screams. “AWWWWWW!!   THERE’S A FLOOD!”
That’s when it occurs to me that he’s probably talking about my bath.  On the floor.  Literally.
He turns off the water.  I’m expecting a lecture.  An argument.  A little uh, laughter, maybe?  (Depending on his mood).
No.  He grabs HIS CAMERA.
And I grab the towels.  He doesn’t help me.
At all.
I’m using every towel we own to soak up the 3″ of water on the floor.
Without any help.  Oh, I have an attentive audience.
And, it seems it’s quite entertaining for some in my home.
The floor sparkled when I was done.
Come back and see how I wash the family’s clothes!!
originally published April 2008